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Thread: Robbers

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Maple Plain Minnesota
    Posts
    182

    Question

    I have been told, refering to bees, "once a robber, always a robber". Meaning they will not go back to harvesting honey from plants.
    What is your opinion on this??

    I set some frames out today with a little honey in them. In 2 minutes the bees had found them and were cleaning them out. All summer it was not this way. I could have frames set out for hours and o bees bothered them. Now you could not posibly eat a peanut butter-honey slice of bread outside. It is not cold here yet and the goldenrod is blooming so they whouldn't be desperate. Do they know something about next week I don't know???

    ------------------
    Erwin

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,609

    Post

    Just that time of year again,...

    Ian

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Post

    In the sense that some strains are more prone maybe that tendancy doesn't go away. But I've often gotten robbers to stop.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    brown county,indiana,usa
    Posts
    571

    Sad

    bummer,checked out one of my hives today,it was totally desimated,dead bees all over the front porch,not a single survivor or a cell of honey left in it,what a drag.guess i should've had entrance reducers on earlier.woes of a lazy beekeeper.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    napoleon ohio
    Posts
    769

    Post

    Hi hoosierhiver do not feel alone.I been fighting robbing for a month now.It may be true they will not ever stop.It seems here they just pick on the next hive.Got to keep a close eye on it. But they you think you have it and do not get to the bee yard for a few days it is to late for thet next hive.I have 6 hives and have no idea whitch one is doing the robbing or if it is one of my hives. If i find out it is one of my hives I will be starting my new outyard early.Then next spring splt up the hive a give everything new queens.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,080

    Post

    Close up all the entrances to about 1 inch area. Lessen what they need to defend.

    Hoosierhiver, could it also be wasps or yellowjackets that killed the bees? When you said no survivors, It reminded me of the time that I did have a hive weakened by robbing bees. But then when the hive was in slow motion from starvation, they were attacked by wasps and yellowjackets. They were wacking off the bees heads at an unbelievable rate. Guess they were getting whatever juices were left from the dead bees.

    Unless they can defend the hive, most hives will be robbed and still have survivors as they will not put up a fight to the death if it makes no difference.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Kansas
    Posts
    1,262

    Post

    The bees escapade here lasted about three days, I tried to help the hive by reducing the entrance to a tube, I reduced the entrance to the robbers hive and even though I slowed down the traffic, the hive being robbed couldn't function. The workers couldn't get in and out with their pollen and nectar and propolis. No matter how small the entrance, the bees didn't protect themselves.. Lots of bees, lots of stores, lots of brood but no guarding activity. It was futile to keep this up and I combined them with another.

    So far I haven't seen the robbers go after another hive in the yard. But if they did, I was/am prepared to split them up and order a couple queens. Things are pretty much back to normal now. The robbers are always testing hives but they haven't been successful.

    You can watch the beeline to see who the robbers are. Then see the hyperactivity going on at the robbers den. LOL They need to have their entrances reduced so that one or two can pass at the time.

    The experience has taught me alot.

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